There are times during the course of watching a broadcast of Major League Baseball when you are an English major with a mind that wanders can lead to unexpected thoughts. For example, I was watching the Cardinals play the Dodgers in Game 4 of their National League Championship Series and the seemingly innocuous happenstance (I had to use those words to prove I was an English major) of Yasiel Puig taking a walk occurred. That led to the time honored cliche from the announcers lips that, “Puig draws a walk.” I completely forgot about the importance of that walk and the weirdness that Puig would actually take four pitches and instead focused on that weird cliche. “Puig draws a walk.”
Being of the curious sort, I then decided to look at the word, “draw,” in the dictionary. Well, I did not actually look at a dictionary. Nobody does that anymore. I went to a dictionary site online. To my astonishment, there are 47 different uses listed for the word. Twenty more and it would have been ketchup. Just in case you might be interested in all the usages, I list them all here as culled from TheFreeDictionary.com. Let’s see where the walk fits (my thoughts in red).
v. drew (dr)
, drawn (drôn)
To cause to move after or toward one by applying continuous force; drag: drew the chair closer to the table; a team of horses drawing a wagon.
See Synonyms atpull
. As in the Cardinals drew the Dodgers closer to elimination
b. To cause to move in a given direction or to a given position, as by leading: The teacher drew the children into the room to see the decorations.
c. To move or pull so as to cover or uncover something: draw the curtains. In this series, the Cardinals drew the Dodgers’ offensive weaknesses?
To cause to flow forth: a pump drawing water; a blow that drew blood. The Shane Robinson homer drew blood.
To suck or take in (air, for example); inhale. What Dodger fans did on Matt Holliday‘s homer.
4. To require (a specified depth of water) for floating: a boat drawing 18 inches. The Dodgers’ boat is sinking.
5. To take or pull out: drew a gun from beneath the counter; drew out a fat wallet. Every baseball player can draw out a fat wallet. Some fatter than others.
To extract or take for one’s own use: draw strength from one’s friends. What the Cardinals do by bringing in Trevor Rosenthal?
b. To make (tea) by steeping. I cannot imagine ballplayers steeping tea.
To eviscerate; disembowel. What Nick Punto did to his team when he got picked off.
a. To cause to come by attracting; attract: afraid the casino will draw undesirable elements to the town.
b. To select or take in from a given group, type, or region: draw clients from all levels of society. The Cardinals draw intense, passionate, irrational and sometimes unsporting fans. But we still haven’t gotten to the walk.
9. To bring to a certain condition or action; lead: drawn to despair; drew them to resign. What the Cardinals are doing to Dodger fans.
To bring about deliberately; provoke: draw enemy fire; draw a penalty on an opponent. Adrian Gonzalez and Yasiel Puig drew cries of foul by Cardinal players. P.S. Get over it.
11. To evoke as a response; elicit: a performance that drew jeers from the audience. Don Mattingly’s decision-making is drawing questions.
12. To earn; gain: deposits that draw interest at a rate of 5 percent. Hmm…Maybe this is the ticket for Puig’s walk.
a. To withdraw (money).
b. To use (a check, for example) when paying.
c. To receive on a regular basis or at a specified time: draw a pension. I don’t want to talk about ballplayer’s money anymore.
To take or receive by chance: draw lots. Jon Jay helped the Dodgers draw good fortune with his outfield play in Game 3.
a. To take (cards) from a dealer or central stack.
To force (a card) to be played. Mattingly going with Ricky Nolasco seemed like a forced card.
16. To end or leave (a contest) tied or undecided. This only happens at All Star Games.
a. To hit or strike (a billiard ball, for example) so as to give it backspin. Holliday’s homer had backspin.
b. To hit (a golf ball) with a draw.
18. To pull back the string of (a bow).
19. To distort the shape of.
20. To stretch taut.
a. To flatten, stretch, or mold (metal) by hammering or die stamping. See Holliday’s baseball.
To shape or elongate (a wire, for example) by pulling through dies. What Mike Matheny did with the Cardinals bullpen this season.
a. To inscribe (a line or lines) with a pencil or other marking implement. What Robinson will do to his home run baseball before it goes on his mantle.
b. To make a likeness of on a surface, using mostly lines; depict with lines: drew a map of the area; drawing landscapes and still lifes.
c. To portray in writing or speech; depict with words: draws moving scenes of ghetto life. Puig’s emotional reactions on the field draw from his Cuban baseball heritage.
23. To formulate or devise from evidence or data at hand: draw a comparison. I have been drawing a comparison between Shane Robinson and Jon Jay all series.
24. To compose or write out in legal format: draw a deed. The 2013 Dodgers are drawing their last will and testament.
1. To proceed or move steadily: a ship drawing near the shore. The Cardinals are drawing near an NL Pennant.
2. To attract customers or spectators: The new play is drawing well. These two teams always draw well.
To pour forth liquid: The patient’s veins don’t draw easily. If this was the movie, The Natural, Hanley Ramirez‘s rib would be doing this.
4. To cause suppuration. This has to do with pus, which I don’t want to talk about. Let’s just call suppuration what southerners call what is happening between the Cardinals and the Dodgers.
5. To take in a draft of air: The flue isn’t drawing. Not going to the Punto well again.
6. To steep in or as if in the manner of tea. Okay, now we are repeating ourselves.
7. To pull out a weapon for use.
8. To use or call upon part of a fund or supply: drawing on an account; drew from the experience of fellow workers.
9. To contract or tighten: material that draws when it dries. The Cardinals are drawing the noose.
10. To conclude a contest without either side winning; tie: The chess players drew in 32 moves.
11. To make a likeness with lines on a surface; sketch.
a. An act of drawing.
b. The result of drawing.
2. Something drawn, especially a lot, card, or cards drawn at random. A Puig walk is certainly random.
3. Sports & Games
a. The arrangement of competitors in a tournament in which the match-ups are made at random.
b. A match-up or opponent in such a tournament.
4. An inhalation, especially through a pipe or other smoking implement. What a certain Indians’ relief pitcher does.
5. One that attracts interest, customers, or spectators: a singer who is a popular draw.
6. The movable part of a drawbridge.
7. A special advantage; an edge: have the draw on one’s enemies. Cardinals’ offense qualifies here.
8. A contest ending without either side winning.
9. A small natural depression that water drains into; a shallow gully. What Jon Jay is digging.
10. Football A play in which the quarterback drops back as if to pass and then hands off to a running back.
11. Sports A face-off.
a. Games A draw shot.
b. Sports A moderate, usually controlled hook in golf.
We have gone through 47 definitions and only one seemed to fit. It looks like Yasiel Puig earned that walk. But then again, maybe the pitcher just gave it to him. Why do I do these things to myself?